Winter Hair Problems: Dry Hair Causes and Remedies
No matter if you have thin or thick hair or curly or straight, dry hair is one of the most common hair problems for women regardless of your length or texture. The reason for dry hair is different for everyone and the way to go about fixing it varies. Whatever the root of the problem is, the solution all comes down to how to get moisture back into your locks.
First and foremost, you need to ask yourself “why is my hair so dry?” in the first place.
Why is My Hair so Dry?
There are many internal and external factors that play a role in causing dry hair. External factors include the weather (cold weather = drier hair), how frequently you are washing your hair (over-washing your hair will cause your hair to be drier because it’s stripping the hair of its natural oils), the hair products you use (are they filled with alcohols or drying agents?), hair tools, or chemical dyeing/styling your hair. Internal factors include what you eat, how hydrated you are, medications you might be on, your hormone levels, and even genetics. Let’s dig deeper into this.
Dry Hair Causes
A lot of people don’t realize that the weather, and more specifically the air, have a huge impact on your hair health. Colder weather brings drier air, and unfortunately strips your hair of moisture and makes it look dull and brittle, leading to more split ends.
The lack of humidity and less moisture in the air during the winter months also causes static, meaning that your hair is charged up with electricity that causes your hair to cling to your clothing.
If you are someone who washes their hair every day, you may wonder – why is my hair so dry, still?! As you now know, dry hair is caused by lack of moisture. Some of you might think that by over-washing, you are giving your hair more moisture. This is definitely not true!! Over-washing your hair actually strips it of its natural oils and shine that not only causes dry hair, but also a dry and itchy scalp.
If you have noticed a dramatically sudden change from luscious locks to dry, dull hair, or experience dry hair for long periods of time, it could be caused by the medications you are taking. There are several types of medications, even ones that people need to take daily that cause dry hair. These medications include antidepressants, certain antibiotics, chemotherapy drugs, gout, antifungal and high blood pressure medication, weight loss drugs, hormonal therapy, and more. Although it is important to always read and understand the side effects of any medication, they can’t always be prevented. Make sure to talk to your doctor or health care provider about your prescribed medication and express any concerns you may have. There could be alternatives to the medications you are taking.
Heat Styling Tools
We get it. A lot of us use heat styling tools for our day-to-day hair routine, but heat styling tools do a big number on the health of your hair. You should ALWAYS use heat protectant before applying any heat to your locks, but there really isn’t a full-proof way of protecting your hair from heat damage other than using them less frequently. Straighteners, hair dryers, and curlers lead to dry hair, breakage, and damage, especially when used frequently. If you are someone who is susceptible to dry hair, breakage, or split ends, heat styling can be the definite cause.
One sure way to stress your hair out is to chemically style your hair (there’s a reason your stylist wears gloves!!). If you color your hair often or get a perm or blowout, you may notice that the texture of your hair becomes drier and more brittle. Dry hair can even be a lingering issue for some time after your chemical treatment. While there are a ton of more natural, less harsh products out there for these treatments, limiting yourself from getting these treatments are the best way to keep your hair moisturized and healthy.
Sometimes, dry hair is just a part of our genetics (you can thank mom or dad for that one!). If your parents or siblings are susceptible to dry hair or scalp, it’s likely you are or will be too. The best way to fix this if it is a part of your genes is to keep your hair healthy and moisturized with the best practices and products.
How to Fix Dry Hair
Limit the Hair Washing
If you are over-washing your hair, your scalp tries to make up for the dryness by going into overdrive to create natural oils which can lead to oily hair, that just adds to your list of hair problems. Experts say that you only need to wash your hair two or three times a week to keep a healthy, balanced, and moisturized mane and scalp.
If you are wondering how to moisturize dry hair, you should start by looking at the products you’re using when washing your hair. Using shampoo all over your head and hair is fine, but you just want to make sure you aren’t overdoing it. Conditioning your hair is also essential when fixing dryness, but you only need to focus the conditioner on the mid shaft of your hair to the ends. Be sure to rinse out all the products thoroughly too.
Moisturize Your Hair Naturally with Hair Masks and Hair Oils
Especially during the colder months, hair masks and hair oils will be your holy grail. Coconut oil and argan oil are particularly beneficial for dry hair. Coconut oil naturally nourishes your scalp and helps to reduce oil buildup. Coconut oil strengthens your scalp which in turn helps to moisturize and nourish your dry hair. Coconut oil is also known to give your hair some extra shine and oomph, making it look less brittle and dull during the winter season. You can leave it in as a hair mask or leave it in your hair before shampooing for that extra protective layer.
Argan oil is very similar to coconut oil in terms of fixing dry hair. It is loaded with vitamins and antioxidants that help increase your hairs elasticity and restores moisture. Try it for yourself to see how it does wonders for dull hair!
It is super important to read the labels of the shampoos and conditioners you are using carefully. You want to look for products that fit your specific hair needs and you want shampoos that are paraben-free. Dry shampoos are great to use in between hair wash days, but they also have their limits. Dry shampoo can cause buildup when used often and will lead to further dry hair problems.
Remember, conditioners are your best friend when it comes to dry hair and using a leave-in conditioner during the colder months is a great way to fix and manage dry hair.
DON’T FORGET YOUR SCALP
Don’t neglect your scalp either by using products that will also help to moisturize your scalp. Keeping your scalp healthy is essentially the foundation to healthy hair. It is very easy for the skin on your scalp to become dry or irritated in the winter due to the weather and the use of hats, earmuffs, etc.
Limit (or Ditch) Styling Tools & Chemical Treatments
Trying to limit how often you use heat styling tools and chemical treatments will do wonders for your hair health. There are plenty of different heatless styles you can do instead of using heating tools.
Since the colder months are now among us, how do you prep your hair? Make sure you are limiting your hair washing, protecting your hair from heat styling as often as you can, moisturizing your hair naturally with hair masks and hair oils, and giving your scalp just as much TLC and attention as your giving the rest of your locks. Call us at 610-489-2049 to schedule an appointment and shop our hair care products here.